10 of the Safest Cars for Teens That Cost Less Than $8,000

Photo (cc) by State Farm

Car crashes are the leading cause of death among teenagers in the U.S., according to federal statistics.

The nonprofit Insurance Institute for Highway Safety encourages parents to spend “a little more” on cars for teens when possible to get key safety features.

Fortunately, that can be accomplished for well under $10,000, judging by the organization’s latest teen vehicle safety ratings. The list of safe vehicles has grown by more than 50 percent over the past year.

Anne McCartt, senior vice president for research at the IIHS, explains:

“Time is on the consumer’s side. It’s easier than ever to find a used vehicle with must-have safety features and decent crash test performance without spending a fortune.”

With a few dozen vehicles now on the IIHS “best list,” 10 options cost less than $8,000. They are:

Large cars

  • Volvo S80 — 2007 and newer

Midsize cars

  • Volkswagen Jetta sedan and wagon — 2009 and newer
  • Volvo C30 — 2008 and newer
  • Volkswagen Passat sedan — 2009 and newer
  • Ford Fusion — 2010 and newer; built after April 2010
  • Mercury Milan — 2010-2011; built after April 2010

Small SUVs

  • Honda Element — 2007-2011
  • Volkswagen Tiguan — 2009 and newer

Midsize SUVs

  • Volvo XC90 — 2005 and newer
  • Subaru Tribeca/B9 Tribeca — 2006 and newer

The safety features that the IIHS says parents should require are:

  • Lower horsepower: This helps reduce the temptation to push a powerful engine to its limits.
  • Bigger, heavier vehicles: Such models, which include small SUVs, are safer.
  • Electronic stability: This technology is a mandatory feature, but that has only been the case since the 2012 model year. It helps a driver maintain control of a vehicle on slippery roads and is “a proven lifesaver,” according to the IIHS.

What kind of vehicle would you recommend to a teen today? Share your thoughts in our Forums. It’s a place where you can swap questions and answers on money-related matters, life hacks and ingenious ways to save.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
9 Houseplants That Remove Toxins From Your Indoor Air

These plants may also do everything from reduce the amount of dust in your home to improve your productivity.

21 Items to Cut From Your Budget That You Won’t Even Miss

Start off the new year by implementing these small-but-smart savings strategies. They’ll soon add up.

8 Key Steps to Planning for Retirement as a Couple

Ready for retirement? Not so fast. You might be surprised at some of the issues that come up for couples when they plan.

7 Mistakes Guaranteed to Ruin Your Retirement

Make even one of these money mistakes, and you’ll probably end up eating ramen noodles in your golden years.

The 5 States With the Worst Health Care for Retirees

All of these states are located in the same region of the nation.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
10 Things Frugal People Never Buy

If you’re a true tightwad, the mere thought of spending money on these items gives you the willies.

10 Useless Purchases You Need to Stop Making

You might as well flush your money down the loo if you spend it on these things.

7 Social Security Rules Everyone Should Know by Now

Confusion over Social Security is a shame, considering how many of us will need this money badly.

If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It

They don’t make coffee makers like this anymore.

What a $15 Minimum Wage Means for Social Security

A federal minimum-wage hike could affect the Social Security system dramatically.

7 Social Security Benefits You May Be Overlooking

There’s more to Social Security than retirement benefits.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

14 Things You Should Stop Buying in 2021

These convenient household products come with hidden costs that you might not have considered.

The 6 Best Investing Apps for Beginners

If you’re looking to ease into investing in the coronavirus economy with just a little money, check out these easy-to-use tools.

Is Writing a Check Still Safe?

Every time you pay by check, you hand your bank account numbers to a stranger.

10 Deep Discounts Available on Amazon This Friday

These items are all steeply discounted — but the deals won’t last long.

8 Things You Should Replace to Improve Your Life Today

Being frugal isn’t smart if you put off replacing these items.

6 Ways to Protect Your Retirement Accounts From Hackers

Imagine having $245,000 stolen from your retirement account — and not being reimbursed.

9 Shopping Mistakes to Avoid at Costco

Are you missing out on serious savings at your favorite warehouse club?

13 Amazon Purchases We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

7 Income Tax Breaks That Retirees Often Overlook

Did you realize all these tax credits and deductions exist — or that they apply to retirees?

This Is the Most Dependable Car Brand in the U.S.

This brand’s vehicles are least likely to give drivers repair headaches, according to J.D. Power.

7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco

Even if it seems you save a bundle buying Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand products, they may not be the bargain they appear to be.

7 Hidden Sections of Amazon Every Shopper Should Know

These little-known departments of Amazon are gold mines for deal-seekers and impulse shoppers alike.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.